Monday 9 November 2015

Florence: Overheard at the Accademia

Tourist: An adult and two children, please
Clerk: How old are the children?
Tourist: 17 and 21
Clerk: .... 21 is not a child!

English lady: We have to queue to change the tickets...
Husband: Yes...
Lady: It's just incredibly badly organised, like everything else in Italy!

To be fair to the Accademia, this was actually one of the better organised systems for queuing that we came across. Although the line for people who had pre-booked was long, it moved very quickly.

I loved this statue of the Rape of the Sabines.

I haven't visited an enormous number of art galleries in my time and so I was a bit disappointed to find most of the blurbs were about the painting/sculpting methods or how to work referenced/influenced other works, rather than sharing any insight into the subject matter. This left me a bit non-plussed. Also, there was an awful lot of religious art, though I don't think that should be surprising. We didn't go to the first floor.

I liked David, but I might have liked Michelangelo's partially completed statues more. So much potential!

One of them was carved from a block that had been reclaimed from a building. Michelangelo: recycling before it was cool.

So, we did venture back to Florence. It was humid. After our visit to the Accademia we had lunch and struck up a conversation with a Harvard student who'd been on an archaeological dig to Iceland (I was a long time ago. Somewhere in northern Europe) and was having a bit of travelling before going back to America.

Then we had a wander around and looked at Stuff. The Cathedral was quite impressive. I've never seen a green and white striped church before, but after a few trips in Tuscany, stripey churches turned out to be the theme of the area.

It was impressive, but it just made me think of the Medici trying to buy their way into the Church, and the opportunism and corruption of Renaissance Italy. And Savanarola, who had no time for any of this stuff. Clearly I've read too much historical fiction about this period.

After tramping around Florence (which we didn't love - I think we were still burned by the hire car thing and it was very humid) we got the bus back to Colle di Val d'Elsa, the nearby town with the big bus station, and walked back to the car park up this hill.

Tutt and I still have a hand signal we created when walking up this hill, to denote its steepness. It is generally now used to refer to any kind of hill. We did watch a woman push (lower?) a baby buggy down it, though - you can see her to the right of the picture.

We didn't spend much time in Colle di bloo di blah, but I did eat one of the best ice creams of the trip there. I think it was labelled as chocolate meringue flavour, but it was basically like chocolate ice cream with a pavlova folded into it - cream and all. And there were cats. Lots of cats.

No comments: